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Sunday Bloody Sunday

Singer: U2

Record Label: Island Records

Music Director:

Rebel song? No, a cry for peace
NIDHI GUPTA  18th Dec 2011

Like all songs protesting against war and violence, U2's Sunday Bloody Sunday has kept generations entranced and has become an anthem since its release in the album, War, in 1983. "This is not a rebel song...this song is...Sunday...Bloody Sunday!" is how Edward Bono introduces it at every concert. Mired in controversy, but hugely popular, this song is about the Bloody Sunday incident in 1972, in Derry, Northern Ireland, also known as the Bogside Massacre, where British troops shot and killed 26 unarmed civil rights protesters and bystanders.

According to Bono, this song is about the plight of the common man in situations of state disturbance. "Music has changed me. It has the ability to change a generation. Look at what happened with Vietnam. Music changed a whole generation's attitude towards war," Bono said in an interview. War and especially Sunday Bloody Sunday, became a rage and the song introduced U2 to a wider audience. The album entered the UK charts at No. 1 and Sunday Bloody Sunday was ranked 272nd on Rolling Stone's 500 Greatest Songs of All Time. Today, it is considered a signature song of the band.

When the band performed it at Croke Park in Dublin, the site of the 1972 killings, he marched along and towards the end, waved a white flag for peace. It also features in the band's 1987 documentary Rattle and Hum, where they give a passionate performance, angered by the Enniskillen bombings by the Irish Republican Army. The song has a distinct militaristic drumbeat and jarring guitar notes that contrast with an easy sing-along rhythm.

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